Review: RiverTime by Rae Renzi

Casey Lord needs a break. Her great-on-paper boyfriend, Reed, is pressuring her to marry him-but she's not sure if he sees her merely as an asset to help his political career. A river-rafting trip in the remote wilderness provides the perfect opportunity to clear her head. Until a flash flood sweeps Casey away from her group-and straight into the arms of Jack, a mysterious man also stranded by the flooding river.

Jack won't tell Casey his last name, and her innocent questions about his life are met with evasive answers. Yet they have to trust each other to survive, and as the pair await rescue, their uneasy truce slowly blossoms into friendship-and love. They agree to keep secret whatever differences may separate them in the real world.

When rescue finally arrives, will it spell an end to their budding relationship or can they find a way to stay in RiverTime.

Casey is separated from the rest of her tour group in the Grand Canyon due to a flash flood. She survives but is stranded on a small beach. She’s trying to get settled when she notices something in the water. When she investigates she discovers that it’s a man and he’s unconscious. She hauls him out and saves his life.

The man is known as Jack. He tells Casey nothing about where he came from, how he got separated from the rest of his group or what he does in real life. They begin a friendship but Jack’s sulky and difficult and Casey’s not sure what to make of him. But as days go by they discover more and more about each other and after a few highly sexual moments Casey creates RiverTime. No one but Casey and Jack exist in RiverTime and whatever happens in RiverTime doesn’t exist in the real world, or does it? The pair fall in love and when it comes down to it they want to stay on their little beach forever. Jack swears that even though they’re in RiverTime that he won’t stop loving Casey even when they’re back in the real world.

After 10 days Casey and Jack are rescued but immediately Jack seems to turn into a different person. He’s let off at the airport where he seems to be met by…his wife? And is that his daughter running up to him? Oh boy. Casey is highly disillusioned and heads home to yes, her boyfriend. (Oh what a tangled web we weave…) Still in an almost dreamlike state Casey accepts Reed’s proposal and gets married.

The truth behind the matter is that Jack hasn’t been anything but legally married to his wife for a couple of years. He’s not had sex with her and he dislikes her intensely because of her manipulations…but he’s still married to her. Jack wants nothing more than to eliminate the marriage but his wife is threatening to take his daughter away and he’ll not stand for that. Jack wants Casey for keeps but is frustrated to no end when he finds out she married Reed.

On top of the problems that Casey and Jack have with their individual marriages, and the problems are massive, someone is trying to kill Casey. Will the two ever find happiness and if they do, will it be with each other?

The first part of the book had me hooked. I was completely sucked into Casey and Jack’s plight with them being stranded and having to try and survive. They did have food from the river tour that Casey had been taking but there were other necessary items that were needed. Jack was a great help even though he wasn’t the sweetest being on earth, at first.

When the pair got back to reality I hated Jack more than a bit. I hate infidelity in books and I have to admit I almost stopped reading at that point but the story still had me and I couldn’t put the book down. Jack and Casey – though their time together had been short – had created a bond together that was quite strong. I wanted nothing more than for all of their issues to be done so that they could be together.

I did think that the suspense plot interrupted the romance just a tad – I mean the romance had so many issues already, did I really need one more thing to deal with? But when it came down to it I thought it all came to a satisfying end. The plot wove in Casey’s work as well as her husband (creep) and it just worked.

Overall a good story. I believe this is Ms. Renzi’s first fiction novel and I have to say it was well done.

Rating: 4 out of 5

This book will be available from Carina Press on 2/14/11


Chris said...

I think I would've been wanting to smack characters.

Ruth said...

Sounds great.. I just pre ordered for my kindle on Amazon:)

Tracy said...

Chris - Maybe a little at times. :)

Ruth - Hope you like it as well!